Helping Businesses Prevail Despite COVID-19

We are certainly living in unprecedented times. Thanks to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, businesses are struggling, plans are put on halt, and stay-at-home orders are in place across various parts of the world. It may be a lot to cope with at the moment, but it is not impossible to succeed right now. The best advice I can give you right now is to keep moving forward whenever possible, just like I, Harry Hayman, am helping Philadelphia do through some of my latest endeavors.

Preparing a New Film

My production company is moving forward with the production and promotion of a film we have been working on, entitled “Metronome.” We had initially decided to scrap this project based on the circumstances, but then we realized something; now, the world needs hope more than ever. That’s exactly what the story of “Metronome” is supposed to represent. The idea of finding your rhythm in life is a message that we felt people need to hear right now. So, we persevered, and have started to launch our website and social media platforms for the project.

Launching New Business Opportunities

Since many people think of Harry Hayman as a hospitality management specialist, they know that I am committed to helping businesses. During these times of uncertainty, I was able to help BeYoga launch its website and social media accounts with my colleagues’ help at Gemini Hospitality Consultants. BeYoga is a new service offering free yoga and meditation classes in the wake of COVID-19. These are times when people need to stop and slow down more than ever, and what better way to do this than through relaxation and exercise?

Helping Those Less Fortunate

What’s most important during these times, however, is making sure that those in need are taken care of. If you know me, you know that I am dedicated to the Feed Philly Coalition, a non-profit I started to help the homeless in Philadelphia receive food. Recently, we teamed up with Renegade Taco Co. to hand out lunches to those in need. Thanks to the economic effects of this pandemic, more people than ever may be without meals, so we felt that the time to help is now.
Our actions won’t stop there. Throughout all of my ventures where possible, we are looking to persevere and continue to make a positive impact on people’s lives and help them through this pandemic. To all those affected by this, I send you positive thoughts, and I encourage you to stay home whenever possible and practice social distancing to help combat this pandemic.
To learn more about how I am looking to help Philadelphia and beyond through these trying times, feel free to contact me.

My Algebraic Formula of Life

When I was younger, I had dreamed about a company I was going to form. I would call it Save The World (STW), and it would have been a for-profit company with a primary mission of doing good for others. I wasn’t sure how I would go about approaching this venture, and I am still trying to figure out the best way to do so. Regardless, I am always on a mission to try to save the world, and that is through making people happy.
My theory is that the world can be broken down into a formula. If carefully cultivated and followed, it can lead to finding your meaning and purpose in life. This ideology is something that I like to call, “The Algebraic Formula of Life.” It’s an idea that I, Harry Hayman, want to share with Philadelphia and the rest of my readers to help you attain this level of happiness.
According to my theory, everybody has a different formula for their lives, as everyone has their own set of interests and values. The trick is to find out what is essential to your life and list them out. To simplify, try to narrow it down to the top ten elements that you can focus on throughout each week.
Naturally, some aspects of your life will hold more weight than others. Here is where the algebraic part comes into play. Out of the ten elements you have come up with, try as best as you can to rank them from most to least important to you. These are the “coefficients” to the “variables” in this formula. When you pair each coefficient (1 through 10) with the “variables” that are the crucial elements of your life, your end result will be happiness.
Take one of my friend’s formulas as an example. Her top 10 things in her life are as follows:
  • Faith
  • Sleep
  • Travel
  • Exercise
  • Reading
  • Her boyfriend
  • Work
  • Associates such as her friends and family
  • Her “me time”
  • Money (defined in her equation as “coin”)
As such, her formula is as follows: 10 (Family) + 7 (Exercise) + 6 (Reading) + 8 (Travel) + 4 (Work) + 5 (Boyfriend) + 9 (Sleep) + 3 (Associates) + 2 (Me Time) +1 (Coin) = H
The trick is to find those 10 things that are the most important to you (yes, only 10 — there are only 168 Hours in a week and you have to sleep at least 49 of those, so you only left with 119), eliminate the rest (hard, I know) and the prioritize the remaining 10 (again, hard – but important – it will change your life).
So in her case, w/ those 119 Hours, 12 should be spent on family, 10.8 additional hours should be spent on sleep (she liked to get 8.5 hours of sleep a week so she is adding 1.5 hours per day to her sleep cycle), 9.6 hours a week should be spent on travel (now in case, she was not from the US so she like to go back home one a year and she liked to go for a month each year – nice if you can do it – some years she could and some years she could not), 8.4 was working out…she liked to work out for an hour every day and 2 on Saturdays (adding yoga), 7.2 hours per week was or should be dedicated to reading, as such she liked to read an hour every day, didn’t like days she didn’t get to read/felt “out of sorts” etc…you get the idea…and then from this, we worked out her ideal day
This algebraic formula has been especially beneficial for me, as it has helped me divide the many hats I wear, such as Harry Hayman, the entrepreneur; Harry Hayman, the philanthropist; and Harry Hayman, the hospitality management specialist. While I may not have my Save The World company quite yet, I am hoping to save one person at a time with the help of this formula.
If you would like to know more about how I apply my formula for happiness, or for any other inquiries, feel free to contact me.

The Restaurant Industry Is Starting to Show Respect for Employees – As We’ve Been Doing All Along!

As a veteran of the restaurant industry, hearing about other eateries looking to make strides to improve turnover rates by taking a progressive lead and improving working conditions is something that I am thrilled to see. I think it’s great to see the advances in the industry, employees are starting to be treated as has been demanded in other industry- as human beings deserving of respect. These are some of the values that I have always emphasized; not only in my restaurant endeavors, but in any business venture I have taken on; treat your managers and employees like family and commend them for their hard work.
My name is Harry Hayman, and this is my advice to anybody looking to lower the turnover rate and improve their standards within not only the restaurant industry but any industry.
According to The National Restaurant Association, employee turnover across the entire restaurant industry was 61% in 2016 and that percentage is almost twice as high for front-line workers. The shocking truth is that restaurants on average are losing somewhere around $150,000 a year due to employee turnover alone!
One thing that I would especially like to emphasize is that these types of strategies to keep workers happy with us is something we have been doing in all the business activities I’ve been a part of. We weren’t doing it because the studies have been shown to support doing things a certain way, or because it will put more money in our pockets. We do it because it’s the right thing to do!
An aspect of business that I have always prided myself on is making sure that we are giving fair and equal opportunities to women and people of any color. In every venture I have run, from my time in the food industry to my time at Gemini Consulting, I have held the firm belief that the most qualified candidate is going to be the one to get the job. I have had women leading my companies for over 28 years, and they have all done tremendous jobs to the point where I would recommend them for any opportunity that comes across for them.
“I have known Harry for over 20 years, he has never done anything but treat me with nothing but respect. My husband and I consider Harry a valuable friend”, states Kim Hall Jackson. “Over the years I have sought Harry our for, not only professional advice but personal advice. Harry was there for me when I went through my health issues and a legal challenge with a friend. I plan to remain in close contact with Harry for the rest of my life.”
No matter what vertical you are working in, the most important thing you should keep in mind is to treat your employees with respect. I have seen gross abuse of power, unnecessary screaming and demoralizing behavior while working as a dishwasher, cook, server, bartender, and manager throughout my professional career. After seeing this, I vowed that I would never turn into the boss that people come to know as a “screamer.” In fact, any management team I have been a part of has rarely, if ever, raised our voices at employees.
It is also important to manage up…to not forget that your boss is a person too and she/he has the same needs and concerns as you do, even if they My boss and friend of over 28 years said as much, “Harry is not my employee, he is my friend”
As far as what various articles have been saying for improving the standards of the food industry, we have always offered flexible schedules and competitive salaries and entertained four-day work weeks. No matter what industry you are working in, your employees are all human. If you don’t treat them as such, they will become unhappy and leave. Treat them the way you would like to be treated, and they will be loyal and hardworking employees for years to come.
I continue to call and seek advice from Harry and we haven’t work together in a decade. I have learned so much from Harry and I continue to put in practice what he preached” said Joseph Picuicca.

Alex’s Lemonade Stand – A Great Cause That Hits Home

January 18TH 2020 was the 14th Annual Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation “Lemon Ball”; an event put on by Alex’s Lemonade Stand to raise money for pediatric cancer nationwide. As a member of the advisory board, I was in attendance at this event. Just as I have in past years, because I was especially moved by the organization and how they were able to raise funds for an incredible cause – a cause, like so many others, that has affected those I love.
My name is Harry Hayman, and this was my experience at the 14THannual Lemon Ball, and how Alex’s Lemonade Stand has had a profound effect on my life.
I remember hearing about Alex and her first-ever lemonade stand mission on the local news. Being from Radnor, we lived close to Alex. In fact, my niece now goes to school with Alex’s brother. For those who don’t know the story, Alex had set it up in an effort to give whatever money she had raised to her doctors so they could find a cure for her cancer. To me at the time, it was a heartwarming news story but, fortunately, I hadn’t had a personal experience with cancer – but that was all to change all too soon.
Shortly after Alex’s death, my best friends’ daughters was diagnosed with cancer at two years old. It was devastating for all of us who knew her, especially her parents. While she is doing well now – she’s currently a freshman at USC – she is still living with cancer. I jumped in where I could, going to walks in Connecticut and fundraiser’s in DC, becoming one of Kennedy’s crusaders and just a friend when Jeff needed to vent. I gained tremendous respect for my best friend, his lovely wife and son by how they dealt with it and in turn have been awed by Kennedy and her ability to adopt and incorporate this horrible disease into her life.
Then, shockingly, in 2017, my sister was also diagnosed with cancer. It was one of the worst years of my life and you can only imagine how the year was for her. Kim is amazing and attacked the cancer head on – she insisted on being as aggressive as you she could possibly be, up to the brink of death, to ensure that she would “see all her kids graduate”. For those who know her, know that she would have it no other way. I am so proud of her and the whole family as it really does “take a village” to beat cancer. I am happy to say today that my sister is cancer free.
After seeing cancer strike so close to home, my father and I got in touch with the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation and pledged our support both financially and in activity. Ironically, my sister’s cancer had typically been a pediatric cancer and Alex’s is a thought and research leader in the world of pediatric cancer. Soon after, my father and I became members of the organization’s advisory board and Jay and Liz, Alex’s parents, have become both friends and mentors as we do whatever we can to help cure this horrible disease.
I had attended the inaugural Lemon Ball with my best friend Jeff Snyder due to his daughter’s diagnosis and his involvement (Jeff is on the board) and have ended up going almost every year but that last few years have been different due to my sister’s diagnosis. This year was the first year my sister felt strong enough to attend and attend she did – looking beautiful and next to Alex, was the bell of the ball!
This year marked the 20th anniversary of Alex’s Lemonade Stand, and the Lemon Ball was held on Alex’s birthday for the first time since we started. As a member of the host committee, I was incredibly proud of the turnout, and I am also pleased to say that we had raised more money for cancer research this year than ever before.
Through Alex’s Lemonade Stand, we have a fund for cancer research under both my sister Kim’s name for her Ewing’s Sarcoma and my late brother Bradley’s name for a diagnosis for all. We are incredibly proud of how this year’s Lemon Ball turned out, and are very excited to continue to help share Alex’s story and expand the reach that she has had on so many who have had their lives changed from pediatric cancer.

My Mantra in the Hospitality Industry – I Sell Happiness

Never let anyone tell you that customer service is easy. It takes a lot of time and energy, but if you genuinely care about your customers and your business, you won’t mind the work it entails. If you’re a business owner, but you don’t think of yourself as being in the hospitality industry, think again. When it boils down to it, every industry is part of the hospitality business. If your customers are not happy or satisfied, then you will not stay in business. But if your customers are happy, it should fill you with a feeling of pride and happiness, too – but more on that later. These are some of the lessons that I learned from my experiences in hospitality and customer service.
When we opened Warmdaddy’s, I worked literally every night for 23 months. I personally made sure that every table was tended to and having a good time. At that time, we only had two restaurants, so that was my only focus. When we opened SOUTH, I did the same and led by example, showing the managers to have the same care, concern, diligence, attention to detail, and desire to please that I did.
Feedback is essential for improving the customer experience. The more current customers you talk to, the more you’ll know how to take care of future customers. There are numerous methods for finding out if your customers are truly happy. You can talk to them in person, but some people might be shy about giving honest feedback to you face-to-face if they’re unhappy about something. Another method we’ve utilized is comment cards for feedback. I always leave my cards at the front with my cell phone number on them. On all of our restaurants’ websites, we make it easy for people to get in touch with us if they have a problem, and we will answer every single email we receive regarding feedback.
But to really get into the mind of a customer and find out what’s working and what’s not, we hire secret shoppers to inspect all of our restaurants. Secret shoppers are a great way to know how your employees are treating guests and we share these reports with the staff.
Earlier, I mentioned that making customers happy can make business owners happy as well. One time that this happened to me – probably the reason why I am still in this business – was in 1993. We didn’t have enough money to hire people to answer the phones, so we took turns; my shift was Tuesdays during the day.
One day the phone rang, and it was the best friend of one of my high school girlfriends. She was planning a night out for her and had no idea I worked at Zanzibar Blue (we only figured it out when she said her name and birthday). From that point, her best friend and I began to plan the most amazing night for her, with everything from flowers, to champagne, to a fabulous dinner, wine, birthday cake, balloons, chocolate, after-dinner drinks, jazz – you name it, we did it.
The night of the party, my high school girlfriend was coming out of the jazz parlor to use the bathroom, and we bumped into each other. She was trying to say thank you, but she was speechless with tears in her eyes from happiness. I realized, right then and there, that I had the most cherished thing in the world in the palm of my hand: happiness, and the ability to make people happy.
As a business owner, you have this ability, too. Make it happen.